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Widow’s grief for action man John, formerly of Bingley
The widow of a man who died in an accident after cycling in the Lake District said anyone who knew him would be grieving his death.
John Graham moved to Cumbria in 1990, but previously lived in Bingley. He died a week ago today after he was found by mountain rescue teams at Lonscale Fell, Skiddaw.
The 59-year-old had been reported missing by his wife, Helen, after failing to return from a cycle ride.
He was well-known as a teacher and for his involvement in organisations including St Bede’s Scouts, the First Division Slaloms where he canoed and Bradford Salem where he played rugby.
“Everyone who knew John will be grieving,” said Mrs Graham.
“Though seldom sitting still, we were so contended and utterly happy after almost 40 years together. He filled every moment with something worthwhile, but not in agitation or restlessness. He could find the funny side of most things and enthuse those around him to be the best they could be.”
Mr Graham became a familiar face around Hackthorpe.
Mrs Graham said: “Much of his recreation featured two wheels of one shape or another, and in place of the underground exploration that had taken him to New Zealand, Switzerland and Derbyshire and the Yorkshire Dales in the past, he transferred his attentions to the high fells.
“He maintained his Mountain Leadership and diverse outdoor pursuits qualifications for more than 30 years, and knew especially the Western Fells with a respectful but affectionate familiarity.”
Mrs Graham said her husband cherished his close connections with all his brothers, his mum and dad and wider family.
“God created something very special in John and the world seems a slightly lesser place without him,” she said.
“His warm smile, idiotic sense of mischief, great fried breakfasts, strange ability to break things and loud vocal renderings of early rock classics will stay with us forever. As his beloved girls said, he was just the best.”
Bradford Salem chairman Neil Klenk said: “He was a player’s player. He was always involved in leading from the front.”